Somalia on November 24th became the 8th member of the East African Community (EAC), after several months of processes and negotiations. The nation was admitted at the EAC Heads of State summit held in Arusha, Tanzania.
Additionally at the summit Burundian President Evariste Ndayishimiye was succeeded by South Sudanese President Salva Kiir Mayardit as the chairperson of the bloc.
The East African community as it presently stands is largely an economic bloc. However, the eventual plan of the EAC is to federate into one state. Meaning the 8 nations (Tanzania, Rwanda, the DRC, Burundi, South Sudan, Somalia, Uganda, and Kenya) will eventually become 1 nation, known as the East African Federation. According to their plans, at least.
The admittance of Somalia to the bloc provides a great economic advantage, giving the EAC access to the Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Aden.
Several months ago this publication wrote on the EAC, its functions, and its plans to eventually federate. If you would like to read more on it, you may do so here.